My son is in town from Tucson, Arizona. He’s visiting me and his visit makes all the difference in the world. I love my children and I am so glad he’s here.
He wanted to go snow skiing at Red Lodge Mountain Resort, so yesterday, that’s what we did. We skied four hours straight and then headed home because we had to pick up my dog, who was at doggy day care.
I grew up snow skiing and I was fairly decent. Not great, but good. Yesterday was my son’s third day skiing and he’s starting to put the pieces together. We took it easy and simply skied green and blue runs all day. My son’s first ski trip was with his friends and they did what all terrible best friends do, they took him to the top immediately and my son fell most of the way down.
What I most liked about snow skiing with my son yesterday was our time together on the chairlift. Each chairlift ride is about 10-15 minutes long and it provided time for us to talk while floating above trees and mountains, suspended from the daily routines of life. Being on a chairlift sitting shoulder to shoulder with your loved one, in nature’s beauty, is a slice of heaven in my estimation.
I don’t believe that all communication needs to be verbal. Presence in another’s company is communication, so sitting next to each other on the chairlift, often times in silence, was also its own special communication.
The last run of the day was breathtaking. The sky was clear, the wind calm, the sun up, the snow perfect. We skied Lazy M all the way down, focusing on our form, our turns, feeling our bodies in motion on the sloped mountain.
I think skiing is like golf in this manner. There is no competition in skiing except you against you. Skiing well is based on mental aspects of performance, visualization and focus.
At one point we stopped half way down Lazy M to take it all in and an older couple, both good skiers, stopped near us. We were all silent. Finally the silence broke and we all agreed that the cost of the lift ticket was worth this one ski run alone. It was that beautiful.
We skied down, walked to my truck, and again, in silence, took off our ski wear and returned to normal clothing. My face was warm from the sun and wind and my body was most certainly tired. Interesting that my body feels similar after a day of snow skiing and a day at the beach. Contentment.
We made it home, picked up my little polar bear of a dog, and headed home for showers. Then it was off for a hamburger and watching the college basketball games. I had a classic Montana beer, White Noise, from Uber Brew.
Sitting with my son, having a hamburger, watching the basketball game, after a good day of skiing simply made me smile. These are the moments that my friend, Ecclesiastes, speaks of.
There are so many moments like these that grace our lives, we just have to notice them and breathe them in, and give thanks. Perhaps it is the many days like these, compiled, noticed, breathed in, that constitute a life well-lived.
It’s not lost on me that while I sit here typing this blog post, with my dog curled up next to my leg, sleeping, and the sun shining through my window, that this is another moment worth noticing. I ought to breathe it in.
Can one argue that our days with family and pets, in nature, in conversation and silence, over a meal, and quiet moments reflecting on our special graces is the essence of a happy life?